Sleep Apnea, Blood Pressure Linked
Full-night sleep studies and echocardiography may need to be incorporated into routine assessments of patients with difficult-to-treat high blood pressure, suggests UAB researcher Monique Pratt-Ubunama, M.D. “And those who are resistant to treatment and are found to have sleep apnea may benefit from mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists, since levels of aldosterone were high in study patients; and continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) should be encouraged,” she said.
Ubunama’s suggestions are based on results of a study funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and presented last month at the American Heart Association annual meeting. “We found a direct relationship between the severity of sleep apnea and cardiovascular changes associated with high blood pressure.”
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